Claremont sexual assault suspect linked to Rancho Cucamonga attack

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (KABC) -- Police believe a 24-year-old man arrested Tuesday in connection with a sexual assault in Claremont is linked to a similar attack in Rancho Cucamonga.

Jacob Latham allegedly attacked a woman who was jogging at Blaisdell Park in the 400 block of S. College Avenue in Claremont at about 7 a.m. Monday.

He approached her from behind, pushed her to the ground and sexually assaulted her. The victim, identified as "Murphy," fought off the man and fled the scene.

"I felt him kind of thrusting his hips against me... I started screaming and he took his hand up, put his hand over my mouth and so I bit him," she said.

Approximately one hour prior to the assault in Claremont, Latham allegedly assaulted a 63-year-old woman near Baseline Road and Hellman Avenue in Rancho Cucamonga.

The victim was seated at the bus stop when Latham allegedly placed a knife to her throat and grabbed her arm. Latham allegedly told the victim he was going to rape her and moved her toward some bushes in the area.

The victim resisted and the suspect told her he was going to kill her. The victim continued to resist and the suspect stopped the attack, ran to his vehicle and drove away, Rancho Cucamonga police said in a statement.

The suspect's vehicle was described as a black-colored Chevy with a partial license plate ending in "802". A vehicle matching the description was found at a nearby gas station. During the later investigation, officers located the vehicle at the registered owner's address and observed Latham entering the vehicle.

After being detained, he admitted he was intoxicated and had decided to assault the victim "because he thought he would not be detected by law enforcement," police said.

Detectives linked the two cases after recovering clothing from the suspect that matched both victims' statements.

Lathan was arrested for assault with the intent to commit rape and assault with a deadly weapon.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact the Rancho Cucamonga Police Department (909) 477-2800.
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